Lawrence Casalino

Chief, Division of Outcomes and Effectiveness Research
Associate Professor of Public Health
Department of Public Health
Weill Cornell Medical College

Lawrence Casalino, MD, PhD, is Chief of the Division of Outcomes and Effectiveness Research and The Livingston Farrand Associate Professor of Public Health in the Department of Public Health at Weill Cornell Medical College. He came to Cornell after nine years at the University of Chicago, where he was a tenured associate professor. Previously, he worked for 20 years as a family physician in private practice in Half Moon Bay, California. During that time he obtained a PhD in Health Services Research at the University of California, Berkeley, with an emphasis on organization theory, institutional sociology, and institutional economics.

Dr. Casalino is interested in comparative effectiveness research focused on the health care delivery system. Put simply, this means asking: which types of organizations, using which types of processes, provide higher quality, cost-effective care? For example: at present, large numbers of primary care and specialist physician practices are being purchased by hospitals. Does this lead to higher or lower quality care? Higher or lower cost care? Delivery system comparative effectiveness research also asks: what are the effects of incentives created by public and private payors in influencing the types of organization that succeed (and thus become more prevalent) and the processes they use to provide care? Dr. Casalino is particularly interested in unintended consequences of policies and in the effects of policies and of the organization of practice on physician professionalism and on racial/ethnic and socioeconomic disparities in health care delivery.

At present, Dr. Casalino is working on projects that (1) seek to define the demography of physician practices in the U.S., to describe the processes used by practices to improve care, and to analyze which factors are related to increased use of such processes; (2) analyze the relationship between different types or practices, different types of processes, and the quality and cost of care provided; (3) seek to identify physician referral networks, describe their characteristics, and analyze which types of network provide better care; (4) analyze the effect of pay for performance programs on physician practices located in sociodemographically disadvantaged areas; (5) analyze the effects of a large program that helps small practices in disadvantaged areas install electronic medical records and use them to improve care; (6) explore ways in which the primary care workday might be transformed.  Dr. Casalino is a co-investigator in the CCDTR evaluation of the Safety Net Medical Home Initiative, a project to transform 65 safety net clinics into high performing patient-centered medical homes.

Dr. Casalino is the recipient of an Investigator Award in Health Policy Research from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. He has served on numerous national committees and as chair of the Academy Health Annual Research Meeting. He has worked extensively with the Federal Trade Commission and with physician groups and hospitals on anti-trust issues related to clinical integration of physicians and of physician-hospital organizations.